Odds and ends from an icy week
When Fredi Gonzalez answered the phone Wednesday and informed me that he and Roger McDowell were in the process of shoveling Bobby Cox’s driveway, I figured I had gained a light-hearted tidbit to start a story.
But when Cox called from his sunny Mexico locale Thursday, he informed me that I didn’t get all of the story. In fact, I missed what truly was the humorous part.
When I told Cox that Fredi and Roger had cleaned his driveway, he said, “Yeah, I know. Did they also tell you that they both fell down and slid all the way to the bottom of the driveway?”
That would have been priceless. Roger has proven that he has the versatility that most other closers have never possessed. I mean over the course of the past two decades he has been both the Second Spitter and the Second Luger. Not many people can ever cough that up when composing their bio.
OK, enough of the winter-related nonsense. I mean, we don’t even have time to mention that the number of school days missed by our kids here in Atlanta matched the number of wins Kawakami totaled in his final 33 starts with the Braves.
Speaking of Kawakami, it will be interesting to see if the Braves decide to invite him to Spring Training.
Julio Teheran, who will most likely be among this year’s non-roster invitees, will be one of the 26 Braves prospects who will gather at Turner Field next week for the club’s first Rookie Development Program.
Teheran, Edward Salcedo, Randall Delgado, Christian Bethancourt, Matt Lipka, Arodys Vizcaino and Tyler Pastornicky are among the most recognizable prospects who have been invited to participate.
They will participate in some on-field activities with Minor League field coordinator Dave Trembley and also learn about some off-field issues, like how to deal with the media and social media.
When you get a chance, check out the story I wrote about Chipper today. It’s tough to say somebody looked good when they are in an indoor batting cage in the middle of January. But as he continued to center Alan Butts’ pitches today, you could see Chipper still has that confidence and swagger.
It’s amazing how things have changed since June, when he was ready to retire at the end of 2010. While talking to him today, I would have to say that he genuinely believes that 2012 could be in his future.